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‘We can’t read your mind’: Ben Thompson urges firefighters to speak up about stress

The battalion chief addresses a worrying statistic about the impact of stress level on firefighters’ day-to-day work

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Battalion Chief Ben Thompson knows how you feel. He’s seen the results of the What Firefighters Want in 2023 survey that highlights a “perfect storm” facing the fire service, and he was not surprised by firefighters’ responses about staffing struggles and stress levels. Thompson expands on his article “‘Buyer beware’: A message from stressed-out firefighters” in the What Firefighters Want digital edition and offers insight into how to help members through challenging times.

Plus, we dig into all of this:

  • What firefighters ranked their #1 stressor (it’s actually not staffing)
  • Finding the line with stress – when it’s standard issue and when it becomes dangerous
  • The power of knowing someone has your back – and how to demonstrate that to your crew
  • The scary statistic about stress impacting quality of service provided

And don’t miss Thompson’s story about how he mastered his TEDx Talk.

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